Official data: Grads entering Malaysia’s workforce already on decline before Covid-19

The number of graduates outside the labour force in 2018 was 808,500 compared to 869,800 in 2019. — Picture by Choo Choy May
The number of graduates outside the labour force in 2018 was 808,500 compared to 869,800 in 2019. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, July 16 — The number of local graduates joining the workforce was already decreasing last year even before Covid-19 wreaked havoc on the economy, according to official data released today.

The Department of Statistics Malaysia released data this afternoon showing the rate of workforce participation among graduates fell 0.1 percentage point, or about 50,000 lower than in 2018, to 83.5 per cent.

The number of graduates outside the labour force in 2018 was 808,500 compared to 869,800 in 2019.

The unemployment rate among graduates, a long-standing problem that has spanned a decade, stagnated at 3.9 per cent, although the increase in the number of graduates last year compared to 2018 could have helped offset the rate.

There were 4.2 million local graduates in 2019, nearly 300,000 more than the previous year.

Graduate unemployment in real figures stood at 170,000 in 2019, some increase of about 10,000 compared to 2018.

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